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Who Needs Cozy Fires When You Can Go Winter Camping?


As part of Hamilton’s annual Feb Fest celebration, the Hamilton Outing Club led six students on a winter camping trip last weekend. The hardy bunch left the Glen House on Friday afternoon, with backpacks full of warm clothes and sleds packed with winter camping gear, and headed to the College’s campsite in the Kirkland Glen. After an hour of snowshoeing on the trails, the group set up camp, assembling tents, and preparing food and warm drinks to ward off the frigid night ahead.

One of the participants, John Myles ’24, said that he had “always kind of wanted to go winter camping and my family has never really been onboard so … I was definitely excited about it when I came here.” Myles added that, “Being on campus during COVID, I often find myself feeling very boxed in … it’s definitely nice taking whatever opportunities are given to switch up the pace, switch up the location. Even though it’s on campus, it’s really nice to go and just separate yourself from the school environment.”

Once camp had been set up and everyone had eaten dinner, the participants spread out around the campfire, bundled in warm clothes to watch the stars and recount stories from their first few weeks on campus. When the fire died down and the temperature dropped, they went back to their tents and climbed into extra-warm winter sleeping bags to stay comfortable through the night.

Fiona Morrison ’24, a January admit who spent her first semester on a program with the National Outdoor Leadership School, said she had never gone winter camping before. She decided to join the trip because she “was trying to meet other outdoorsy people, and it seemed like a fun thing to do.”

As the sun came up on Saturday morning, the students slowly left their tents, having braved the cold of the night, and began to take down camp. After packing up and retracing their steps back to the Glen House, they returned their winter gear and went on their way.

 “It was fun to have a little adventure. Even though we didn’t go that far, it [was] still, you know, fun!” Morrison said.

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